Monday, February 28, 2011

March Madness Fabric Style

The Fat Quarterly is going to declare a Modern Fabric winner this April.   Cooresponding to the basketball championships, they have devised brackets so you can predict who you think will win. 

I just filled out my brackets.  If I am half right, I will be surprised.  But that's half the fun of it! 

Here's the link:

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Block Eight Winners!

Let's have some winners already!!!  I like posting winners in the morning instead of late at night sometimes, but this morning got away from me being able to get to the computer.  We do have two winners among the great blocks showing up on flickr.

First though, I have had some ask how I pick the winners.  I have mentioned it before, but in case you missed that particular post, I let pick the winners.  I count how many photos are in the flickr pool between my photos and magically random numbers appear!

So who did pick this time?

First, a quilt lady!

and second, IslandLifeQuilts!

You each get a mystery prize from either Jovita or I.  Email me your address along with your flickrname either through flickr or at

Thanks for playing!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Block Nine with Jovita Goldschmidt

Here we are at Block Nine.  Awesome!  This block has been a little interesting to work on.  Interesting because Jovita lives on the other side of the pond.  The time zone difference making communicating by email a slower process than usual.  I think it is amazing that in our Layer Cake Quilt Along group we have people from all over the world! 

Jovita's blog is:

Here's Jovita!

I’m a native of the Pacific Northwest (USA) and am happily married to the love of my life. Axel is originally from Germany so you’ll often finding us jumping back and forth across the pond to visit friends and family.

My love for fabrics and creating things began at a very young age as I watched my mom sew work shirts, wedding clothes, play clothes, swimwear and even underwear for myself and seven siblings while my dad worked, gardened and bartered to feed his brood at home.

As a result of their amazing inspiration, I am surrounded by craftsmen: everything from woodworking to ceramic art, tole painting and cross-stitching to knitting and more – oh, did I mention quilting? My mom and four sisters are all quilters.

I also love to garden and to cook and bake, but hate the clean-up and can really get lost in a good book - especially if it’s a historical novel but only if it’s based on true fact.

When I’m not sewing, I’m dreaming up a new design for this or that, updating the shop’s website, sitting with a cup of coffee on the porch staring at the garden with a blank notebook next to me ready to jot down, scribble or draw the next crazy idea whether it be a quilt, something to paint on the wall, a sketch of a newflower bed, something “to do” or a note to a friend . . .

. . . you get the picture right? . . . my brain never stops!

Jovita has 4 variations for her block.  These blocks aren't actually sewn together yet.  She has sewn the 9 pieces together and rotated them to come up with 4 variations. 

Here's what I came up with!  It was fun rotating and playing.  I wanted to have my yellow be star points, but then I liked the white design better this way.

So what happens next?

Well, any pictures posted in the flickr group by tonight will be entered into the first drawing. About 10 ish tonight (Mountain Time) I will post my Block EIGHT. All blocks BEFORE mine are those entered into the first drawing. It doesn't matter which block - just the one's posted before mine. If you post your block AFTER mine, then it will be entered into the next drawing. I will post the winners tomorrow.

What's up for grabs this time?

I actually don't know. . . .  We will have two mystery prizes up for grabs this time.  

Happy Quilting!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

In The Works

How many projects do you work on at one time? 

Not how many PIGS (Projects In Grocery Sacks) you have waiting to be worked on, but how many are you actively working on?

I know a few quilters who work on one project until it's done.  Only when it is done do they allow themselves to work on another project.  I am much more scatterbrained than that.  I think right now I have about more projects actively going than at any other time.

1)  The rust quilt.  I got the blocks pressed Thursday.  It's ready to lay out when the kids are preoccupied and won't "help" me.

2)  Our Layer Cake sampler. 

3)  The brown quilt.  I got the fabric organized and figured out how to cut it up.  Almost started cutting a couple days ago, but pressing the rust quilt took too long.  It will be done in less than 2 weeks. 

4)  A quilt for Quiltmaker.  I just found out my block is going to be included in the next Quiltmaker 100 Blocks issue.  I said I would make a quilt using the block.

5)  Big Game Hunter.  This is a pattern I am doing with Northcott.  I am currently sewing strip sets together in between sections of other projects.

6)  Future fun.  Just got some early fabric in the mail.  This one isn't due for over a month, so I shouldn't start it yet.  I just want to.

7)  Another one for my upcoming book that my sister-in-law sewed the blocks for.  I am trying to decide if I will try to finish it or ask her to.  I don't know if this one counts because I haven't worked on it this week. 

8)  A guild project.  This is a project that I may only work on at guild.  It isn't on a time frame.  I haven't actually sewed anything yet, but a few blocks are cut out and waiting.

9-10)  Two quilt tops waiting to be quilted (by me) for the book.  One with some Amy Butler's Love and the other is out of Heather Ross' Far Far Away II.

11-?)  Quilts to be bound for the book. 

???)  Playing with quilt designs on EQ7.  These obviously don't count since some of them will never actually be made.

What does "working on" mean?  Does it just mean piecing?  Maybe.  Are any of you as crazy as I am?  I bet more than one of you has a longer list than I do.  What do you say?

Friday, February 18, 2011

McCall's Quick Quilts

For some reason I am not able to add images right now.  Lately I have been getting an error message, but it usually goes away after I try a few times.  Not today.  I still wanted to share the news ---

I got an email today with this link:

This is a quilt of mine that will be in McCall's Quick Quilts next issue.  It is so fun to see the picture they have taken.  I haven't seen it for long enough that I get to fall in love with it all over again!  Fortunately they gave it a fun name.  I sent them "gray modern" quilt and they came up with "Urban Neighborhood." 

I used Hope Valley in the quilt with 3 shades of gray.

From the link above, there is another link to a FREE Web Bonus pattern!

Hope you like it!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

NQR: Valentines Day Craft for Kids?

Lately I have been very tempted by these chocolate covered strawberries.  This picture is from Shari's Berries.

I mentioned this last weekend to my sister and sister-in-law.  So what do they do, they talk me into making them.  The one problem about making them is they don't turn out picture perfect.  I knew you wouldn't believe me so I actually went back and took the picture:

We dipped them last night as a family activity/surprise for dad while he was at work. 

Even though they aren't photogenic, there are some bonuses of making your own:
end up with 3 dozen instead of 1 dozen
licking the bowl
fun activity with the kids
even the 3 year old could do it
they still taste good
(I used Ghirardelli's chocolate chips, and I did know that a little bit of oil needed to be added.)

This is definitely a "craft" I would recommend.  We had a lot of fun.

I think I will end up eating most of them, but that may or may not have been part of the original plan.

I do have a question though, for those of you who actually do cook -- how do you store chocolate covered strawberries.  My chocolate is sweating because I put them in the fridge.  I was afraid my strawberries wouldn't like being kept out, but are they okay since I haven't taken the leaves off?

Thursday, February 10, 2011

What do you do with your Scraps?

Isn't this a lovely pile of scraps?

Kona solids, Kaffe Fassett shot cottons, and Moda cross weaves.  Yes, I will show you the rest of it one day. 

Question of the day -- what do you do with your scraps?

For years, I had a trash can designated just for fabric scraps.  It didn't get emptied often just smashed down.  I tried making fabric from the fabric scraps -- some people do.  It didn't work well for me. I have been trying something else recently.  I don't remember where I heard, but I didn't come up with the idea, of putting all your scraps into a pillowcase.  Then, when it gets full, stitch it up and use it for a dog cushion.

Those who know me are questioning this because I have a way with dogs -- and it really isn't great.  However, I have some relatives who love their dogs.  Wouldn't that be thoughtful of me -- to give them my trash?  As you can see from the picture below, this pillowcase is getting about full.  There are batting scraps in there too.  I hope the dogs do like it because it's fun to not have to put those beautiful scraps in the trash.

So, what do you do with your scraps?

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Block Seven Winners!

More winners today, hooray!

First of all, we have THREE winners from Mary Anne Ciccotelli!  If you are one of the lucky winners of Mary Anne's hexapins, let me know what color you want along with your mailing address and flickr name.  She made them and has most colors.  (I will forward your email on to Mary Anne.) 

The first winner of a hexapin is:


The second winner is:


The third winner is:

Laura VanVleet!

And the final winner, who gets my book:

is El-Petit-Taller!

Congratulations!  Email me your info to claim your prize --

Happy Quilting!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Block Eight with Mary Anne Ciccotelli

Block Eight!  Hooray!  Hooray!  Hope you can take a break from shovelling snow and get to the sewing machine.  Mary Anne has a fun block for us today.  It practically sews itself together!  So let's give Mary Anne a big hello and get started!

Hi -

My name is Mary Anne Ciccotelli and I have lived in New York for almost 13 years. I wanted an email address that quilters could remember me by and NYQuilter was available - thus my email and website addresses. I am originally from Rexburg, Idaho but lived in Maryland when my husband I were dating. I would drive up to see him and as I was crossing the George Washington Bridge, I would see the New York City skyline and wondered what was this Idaho girl getting herself into?

I have been an obsessive/passionate and sometimes (more-than-not) compulsive quilter since 1999. It wasn’t until I was preparing for a solo exhibit to celebrate my 50th birthday that I realized I had made a quilt in each of the decades of my live. To see a collection of my work over the year, please visit my website:

I am proud to be the keeper of six generations of quilts. I love the opportunity to share this story with quilters across the country. I am especially excited to share my story with some of the quilters that will be attending the Home Machine Quilting Show in Salt Lake City in May of this year. I will also be teaching a class entitled “Disappearing Rainbow” which features the same technique used in constructing this week’s block. If you are planning on attending classes at the show, please let me know and I will send you a discount code so that you can save $5.00 on your registration fee.

Mary Anne Ciccotelli

Hey--Mary Anne said she was going to be in my neck of the woods in May!  How fun is that!  Oh, you want to see her block?  Here you go--

Mary Anne has two versions of her block: 

And here is my version.  You notice that in Mary Anne's block she only used two colors.  To do that you would need two layer cake pieces of the same fabric.  I had a scrap that I used for the 5" square.  You can see that it ended up being the small squares.  That would be a fun place for an accent fabric.  I like how my stripes ended up.  (There were a lot of striped fabric in my layer cake it seems -- eek!)

So what happens next?

Well, any pictures posted in the flickr group by tonight will be entered into the first drawing. About 10 ish tonight (Mountain Time) I will post my Block SEVEN. All blocks BEFORE mine are those entered into the first drawing. It doesn't matter which block - just the one's posted before mine. If you post your block AFTER mine, then it will be entered into the next drawing. I will post the winners tomorrow.

What's up for grabs this time?

Mary Anne has donated THREE of her Hexapins that she is known for -- and has many colors for you to choose from -- for our prize tomorrow! Thanks Mary Anne!

What do I have? I have one of my pattern books, Simply Charming Fun, to send your way -- since we are having so much fun!

Happy Quilting! 

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Fun Packages

I have been getting lots of fun packages lately getting my latest book ready.  I try to get what I can locally, but sometimes I just have to order it.  If you look behind the box, there's a sneek peek at one of the quilts in the book.  You may recognize Central Park by Kate Spain for Moda. 

I have held off on this fat quarter bundle for several months now.  I now have a pattern for it, so I resisted no longer.  Brown in my favorite color.  I am a little nervous.  I have been using solids recently, but never a whole quilt out of solids.  I'm always up for a good experiment though.  I will definitely let you see the results.  Wish me luck!

I also got a sneek peek at Kate Spain's newest line -- her Christmas line -- Flurry!  How can Christmas fabric be in the works already?!?  I have the perfect pattern for this fabric.  I will share details when I can.  Haven't decided which way I will go with it yet.

Don't you love it when there is something besides junkmail and bills in the mailbox!!!